Asbestos at Work

Areas where asbestos is commonly found


Asbestos Cement Sheet See Cement Sheet Asbestos Cement Sheet
Adhesives Industrial adhesives commonly contained asbestos, usually chrysotile.  
Air conditioning duct insulation Internal sections of duct work may be internally insulated within fire rated asbestos board. Air conditioning duct insulation
Air conditioning gussets Made from woven chrysotile.  
Aprons Made from woven chrysotile.  
Arc shields Found on electrical switchboards. Made from moulded asbestos cement sheet. Also known as flash boards. Arc shields
Automotive body underseal Bituminous sealants often contained asbestos. Usually chrysotile.  
Battery boxes Battery boxes in older cars comprised of pitch, rubber and crocidolite.  
Bituminous membranes Used as water proofing on rooftops and floors. Usually contains chrysotile, but sometimes amosite or crocidolite.  
Blackboards Blackboards made from painted asbestos cement sheet.  
Blankets Made from woven chrysotile or crocidolite, often containing internal loose fill asbestos insulation. Used for thermal insulation/protection of steam pipe valves/flanges and as fire insulation in penetrations. Blankets
Boiler insulation Large industrial boilers often containing sprayed asbestos insulation beneath outer metal cladding and as insulation on associated duct work. Smaller commercial boilers insulated with asbestos blocks or composite materials applied to the outer surface of the boiler and clad with calico or metal sheeting. Various other asbestos products associated with boilers including seals, gaskets, fire rated board etc. Boiler insulation
Bracket insulation Sprayed asbestos applied to structural building brackets to provide fire insulation. Bracket insulation
Braid Made from woven chrysotile.  
Brake and clutch linings Resin impregnated asbestos braid used on all vehicles, lifts, industrial lifting equipment etc.  
Cable sheaths Woven chrysotile sheath around electrical cables. Cable sheaths
Calorifier insulation Provides thermal insulation to hot water calorifiers. Insulation generally contains amosite (brown asbestos), with an external cladding of calico or metal. Calorifier insulation
Cement sheet

Asbestos cement sheet (also known as fibrocement or AC sheet) may contain chrysotile, amosite and/or crocidolite. Use of crocidolite ceased in the late 1960's. Later cement sheet products contained only chrysotile until its use ceased in the early to mid 1980's.

Most commonly found as flat or corrugated sheeting, available profiles included shadowline, highline, coverline, ribline and striated.

Wide range of applications including: eaves, roofing sheets, roof shingles, external and internal wall cladding, ceilings, underlay, guttering, downpipes, conduits, flues, water pipes, fences, ceramic tile backing, fish ponds, planter boxes, pots, phone box tops, switchboard linings, fire place linings, shower recesses, arc chutes, arc shields, underground pits.

Cement sheet







Cinema screens Made from woven chrysotile.  
Cooling towers Outer cladding and internal filler from asbestos cement sheet or internal plastic filler containing asbestos.  
Curtains Made from woven chrysotile. Curtains
Door seals Seals of doors on ovens, fire proof cabinets, furnaces, boilers etc made from chrysotile.  
Durabestos & Durawall Asbestos cement sheet products manufactured in Australia by Wunderlich.  
Electrical appliances Insulations of various appliances including irons, hair dryers, TV sets, projectors. toasters etc.  
Electrical conduits Moulded asbestos cement sheet.  

Exhaust pipe insulation
Exhaust pipes from engines such as generators found within buildings were often insulated within asbestos, similar to that found on hot water and steam pipes.  
Fake brick cladding See cement sheet. Fake bricks attached to asbestos cement sheet backing. Used for external cladding of houses. Fake brick cladding
Fibrocement See cement sheet.  
Fibrolite Asbestos cement sheet manufactured by James Hardie in Australia.  
Filter materials Used in both powdered form and as a filter paper, asbestos was utilised in the beverage and food manufacturing industries for product filtering, within gas masks and in HEPA filters.  
Fire blankets Made from woven chrysotile.  
Fire curtains Made from woven chrysotile, used for fire protection in theatres between the stage and seating area.  
Fire door insulation Made from woven chrysotile, used for fire protection in theatres between the stage and seating area.  
Fire rated board Medium density asbestos board with a variety of uses including fire door insulation, fire walls, fume cupboard lining etc.  
Fire stop insulation Either a woven asbestos bag containing loose fill asbestos insulation or a composite asbestos mix, used to fire proof penetrations. Fire stop insulation
Fishponds Constructed from moulded asbestos cement sheet.  
Flowerpots Constructed from moulded asbestos cement sheet.  
Flues Asbestos cement flues on heaters, hot water services, sanitary napkin incinerettes. Flues
Fume cupboards Walls, benchtop and/or baffle plates made from asbestos cement sheet or fire rated board.  
Fuse blankets Small pieces of woven asbestos braid used to stop arcing in high voltage ceramic fuse blocks.  
Furnace insulation Internal walls of industrial furnaces lined with fire rated asbestos board.  
Galbestos Galvanised iron sheets with a coating of chrysotile on each side, covered by a coating of paint or bitumen. Available in flat, corrugated and other profiles. Manufactured from the 1950's through to the 1970's.  
Gaskets Gaskets for flanges commonly contain chrysotile.  
Gauss mats Asbestos impregnated wire mats used in laboratory applications. Gauss mats
Gloves Made from woven chrysotile.  
Hats Made from woven chrysotile.  
Heat banks Asbestos containing insulation blocks or millboard used in some brands of both domestic and commercial electric heat banks up until the early 1980's. Brand names included Potteron, Auto-hot and Kleenheat. Heat banks
Ironing board covers Made from woven asbestos.  
Laboratory benchtops Made from compressed asbestos cement sheet.  
Laboratory mats Commonly found in school laboratories under Bunsen burners. Made from asbestos cement sheet or fire rated asbestos board.  
Laminates Containing a thin layer of asbestos paper beneath the outer decorative coating. Used extensively in ship building and in high temperature applications.  
Lift doors Internal core often containing asbestos insulation.  
Light fittings Light fittings may contain asbestos cable sheathing or millboard seals.  
Limpet "Limpet" asbestos is a trade name used by J.W. Roberts Limited to market sprayed asbestos insulation. The "Limpet" process included sprayed amosite, chrysotile and crocidolite.  
Limpet board Perforated "peg board" containing asbestos. Main application was to cover sprayed limpet asbestos, although was also used to cover synthetic mineral fibre insulation batts or blankets to provide a fire rating. Limpet board
Marinite A fire rated asbestos board used in ship building.  
Mattresses Made from woven chrysotile cloth, often with internal loose asbestos fill. Used to cover pipe flanges, diesel power generator exhaust pipes etc.  
Millboard A soft asbestos containing cardboard like material. Normally containing chrysotile, but occasionally contains amosite and crocidolite. Many uses as a thermal and electrical insulator.  
Monocote Sprayed asbestos insulation containing a small percentage of chrysotile.  
Mortar Asbestos often added to mortar.  
Oven insulation Internal lining of fire rated board and woven asbestos seals.  
Packing materials Asbestos packing within valves and stopcocks. Usually chrysotile. Packing materials
Paints Asbestos packing within valves and stopcocks. Usually chrysotile.  
Pipe insulation Provide thermal insulation to steam and hot water pipes. The most commonly encountered insulation installed as preformed sections containing amosite (brown asbestos), with an external cladding of calico or metal sheathing. Small diameter pipes may also be insulated by wrapping strips of flexible asbestos containing board. Pipe insulation
Pipes Asbestos cement pipes used for fresh water supply, stormwater and sewerage systems. Pipes
Plaster cornice adhesive Mostly contained chrysotile asbestos, but sometimes amosite asbestos.  
Plastics Asbestos was incorporated as a filler material in many common plastic polymers such as PVC, polypropylene and nylon.  
Proximity suits Woven chrysotile full body suits used by fire fighters. The more modern suits are internally lines with non-asbestos fabric, with the external surface sealed with an aluminium coating to assist in reflection heat.  
Re-heat box insulation Fire rated asbestos board within re-heat boxes of air conditioning systems.  
Render Asbestos often added to cement based renders.  
Roadway pits Constructed of moulded asbestos cement.  
Rope Many ropes are made of asbestos. Rope
Screeds Floor leveling screeds often contained asbestos.  
Shadowline Moulded asbestos cement sheeting.  
Shotgun shell wads Packed with white asbestos.  
Silbestos Sprayed asbestos insulation utilising crocidolite from the Wittenoom mine.  
Socks Made from woven chrysotile asbestos. Reported to cure corns and bunions.  
Spackle Asbestos present mainly in the top-coat.  
Sprayed insulation Sprayed asbestos insulation was used for fire protection, thermal insulation, condensation control and acoustic insulation. Various trade names for sprayed asbestos insulation included Limpet (amosite, chrysotile or crocidolite), Asbestospray, Cafco, Silbestos (crocidolite) and Monokote (chrysotile). Sprayed insulation
Steriliser insulation Asbestos blocks or composite materials applied to the outer surface of the steriliser unit and clad with calico or metal sheeting.  
String Composed of chrysotile or crocidolite. Applications include windings on welding electrodes and thread for sewing together various asbestos textile products.  
Steam engine insulation Boiler units of steam locomotives insulated with asbestos blankets and various asbestos products.  
Super Six Corrugated asbestos cement sheet. Manufactured by Hardies. Super Six
Switchboards Older black electrical switchboards manufactured from coal tar pitch and asbestos (usually chrysotile). Brand names include "zelemite" and "miscolite".  
Talc Asbestos (usually tremolite or anthophyllite) can be found as a natural contaminant in talc.  
Tasbestos Asbestos cement sheet manufactured by Goliath Portland Cement Co. in Australia.  
Telecommunications pits Underground pits made from moulded asbestos cement sheet.  
Telephone boxes The dome top on the old red phone boxes was made from moulded asbestos cement sheet.  
Textiles Various products made from woven chrysotile or crocidolite.  
Tilux Laminated flat asbestos cement sheet with various decorative pattern designs. General used in wet areas such as shower recesses, bathrooms and kitchens.  
Underlay Asbestos millboard or cement sheet used as underlay to vinyl flooring and cement sheet used as underlay to ceramic floor tiles.  
Vermiculite Asbestos (usually tremolite) can be found as a natural contaminant in vermiculite.  
Vinyl floor tiles Chrysotile asbestos used in vinyl tiles until about 1985. Older tiles contained up to 28% asbestos, while the tiles manufactured in the 1980's contained 8% asbestos.  
Vinyl floor sheeting Asbestos millboard/paper sheeting used as backing to upper layer of non asbestos vinyl sheeting. Vinyl floor sheeting
Weatherboards Woodgrain textured asbestos cement sheet weatherboards.  
Welding blankets Made from woven chrysotile.  
Welding rods Welding rods were wrapped with asbestos string. Chrysotile and/or crocidolite.  
White asbestos See chrysotile.  
Window seals White asbestos braid used as seals within window frames. Usually associated with asbestos cement sheet clad roofs (e.g. skylights associated with sawtooth roofs).  
Zelemite See switchboards.  


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